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Fish Tank Forum • View topic - Am I doing the fishless cycle properly or not?
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Am I doing the fishless cycle properly or not?

If you are new to the hobby.

Am I doing the fishless cycle properly or not?

Postby Martynblackburn » Sun Oct 27, 2013 12:50 am

Hi, I'm new to the hobby and need some advice.

I'm about 3 weeks into my fishless cycle, 60litre, freshwater tank. I've used Jeyes household ammonia and treated the water with Seachem Prime. I have an API testing kit and have been using it from the start.

I have documented the readings and it appears that after 12 hours I get high nitrates of 160ppm, and 0ppm to 0.25ppm ammonia. I get Nitrites of 5.0ppm and this hardly fluctuates. Ph normal reads around 6.4 but it does dip to 6.0ph after 12 hours. I have soft acidic water.

Every 12 hours I do a 50% water change but lately I've been doing a 80% water change. After a 50% water change I can get the ammonia back to 4ppm and get the nitrates down to 80ppm; the ph goes to 7.6ph. This is also roughly the same for an 80% water change.

I have been advised to get some bicarb of soda but I have also been told not to mess about with the ph and it wouldn't affect the cycle anyway.

Am I just going through the cycle or am I doing it wrong?
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Re: Am I doing the fishless cycle properly or not?

Postby Big Den » Sun Oct 27, 2013 8:30 am

Do not, under any circumstances, part change the water, you effectively go back to the start. have a read through this article,
viewtopic.php?f=37&t=23
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Re: Am I doing the fishless cycle properly or not?

Postby Martynblackburn » Sun Oct 27, 2013 11:22 am

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Re: Am I doing the fishless cycle properly or not?

Postby Martynblackburn » Sun Oct 27, 2013 11:27 am

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Re: Am I doing the fishless cycle properly or not?

Postby malakye » Sun Oct 27, 2013 2:51 pm

when doing a fishless cycle you do not do any water changes until it has cycled then you do a large water change before adding your fish.
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Re: Am I doing the fishless cycle properly or not?

Postby Martynblackburn » Mon Oct 28, 2013 1:12 am

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Re: Am I doing the fishless cycle properly or not?

Postby Big Den » Mon Oct 28, 2013 9:03 am

Sorry, was you asking our opinion? If you know so much about it get on with what you are doing I'm sure you know best.
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Re: Am I doing the fishless cycle properly or not?

Postby malakye » Mon Oct 28, 2013 1:40 pm

It doesnt matter how acidic your water is you should not do a water change but seeing as you know better we will leave you too it. You lower the nitrates at the very end when you do a large water change. If whoever you are getting your "other" info is indeed a font of knowledge they should know that pH values drop when the lights go off, bacteria will grow in any lighting conditions but if you have a planted tank the lights are needed.
If you actually want help and advice then great, if however you are simply on the group to cause arguements then please do let me know.
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Re: Am I doing the fishless cycle properly or not?

Postby POS_miniracer » Tue Oct 29, 2013 12:36 am

I can tell you from personal experience that doing water changes during the cycle will indeed drag the cycle out (even if it doesn't exactly start over from scratch)

So if you are doing partial (especially large partial) water changes during your cycle then the answer to your question is no, you are not doing it right.
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